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Motor industry skills task force set up

Automotive Skills, the sector skills council for the retail motor industry, has announced the formation of a ‘skills accreditation task force’.

The task force is designed to be representative of the entire automotive industry ensuring that the decisions taken by the newly established group will be agreed industry-wide.

The task force will be responsible for the development and implementation of a system of accreditation for skilled individuals in the sector, which ‘will set new standards of competence for the industry’.

The new voluntary and self-regulated higher standards will focus on technician accreditation as well as customer service roles right across the sector.

Christopher Macgowan, chief executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), will chair the new task force: “I am delighted to be leading this high level group. We all know that the way to get the best possible customer service is to have a well educated, well trained and well motivated workforce.

“I have no doubt that the task force will play a big part in helping to achieve this. We need to come up with clear direction for the whole industry where every employee, at every level, has confidence in a new accreditation system. It should look out for those who have served the industry over the years, as well as the new recruits we must continue to attract.”

Membership of the 15 strong group includes key organisations from the automotive industry who will be represented by:

  • Christopher Macgowan, chief executive, SMMT (chairman)
  • Matthew Carrington, chief executive, RMIF
  • John Cooper, director, Ford customer service division
  • Geoff Davies, general manager of the Toyota and Lexus Academies
  • Nikki King OBE, managing director, Isuzu Truck UK
  • John Lewis, director general, BVRLA
  • Geoff Matthews, head of the Honda Institute
  • Steve Nash, After sales director, BMW UK
  • Patricia Richards, chief executive, Automotive Skills
  • Douglas Robertson, chief executive, SMTA
  • Martin Sawkins, HR director, the Automobile Association
  • Tracey Shelley, chief executive, SOE
  • Sarah Sillars, chief executive, IMI
  • Malcolm Tagg, director general, VBRA
  • David White, customer service director, Kwik-Fit

    Membership may change over the life of the task force as new issues emerge and develop.

    Patricia Richards, chief executive of Automotive Skills, says: “The motor industry has long debated the issue of skills accreditation. With the establishment of this task force which is representative of our entire sector, the direction which skills accreditation takes can now be given a clear focus and stronger emphasis. The wide and senior representation included in the task force will ensure that the entire industry’s views are properly represented”.

  • For further information please contact Patricia Richards, chief executive, Automotive Skills on 0207 436 6373.
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